Hailey Bieber's ‘brownie glazed lips’ are causing controversy on TikTok

*Cough* cultural appropriation *cough*

BEAUTYcrew Beauty Editor / September 28 2022

Hailey Bieber has come under fire recently for culturally appropriating a makeup technique synonymous with Mexican American and African American culture. 

Bieber shared her latest lip combo obsession for autumn via TikTok, which she coined ‘brownie glazed lips’. The name is a play on her signature glazed lip look that utilises her go-to nude lip liner – the Naomi Lip Pencil by Scott Barnes.

Her ‘brownie glazed lip’ look on the other hand, combines a deep brown lip liner with Bieber’s Rhode Skin Peptide Lip Treatment, and unfortunately, bears a striking resemblance to a makeup look that has historically been attributed to brown and black American women.  

Why is this an issue? When the so-called ‘brownie glazed lip’ was worn by women of colour it was a source of racial discrimination. But when Hailey Bieber did it, it became fodder for trend-based culture.

It highlights a clear disparity between ethnic groups, and the commercialisation of Latina and African American culture for profits that will never benefit their respective communities. 

All things considered, the Latina and African American communities have been fairly kind about the issue. Many have simply left sarcastic comments on Bieber’s ‘brownie glazed lip’ tutorial, while others have shown less restraint and stated the obvious:

“Okay what's the name of the Latina you saw with this lip combo?,” questioned one commenter, “because this has been a thing since the 90s lol.”

“This was chola lipstick in the 90’s,” said another comment. “Love the Chicana look.” 

“Laughs in Hispanic,” joked one TikTok user, while another hilariously quipped, “omg queen you inspired my tía to do this in the 90’s #latinaslay.” 

TikTok creator Taija Reed was less forgiving than her peers and called Bieber and her fans out on TikTok. “Y’all will do anything but give black and brown people credit,” said Reed in the video. “Where the f*** do y’all think you got it from? Be for real.”

“Now it’s part of the clean girl aesthetic, you want to rebrand it?,” she asked viewers.

Bieber’s fans have tried to defend the Rhode Skin founder, saying that she is likely drawing inspiration from her Brazilian mother and grandmother. But considering the lip look in question is distinctly derived from Mexican American and African American women, their arguments fall somewhat flat in the grand scheme of things.

Bieber has yet to remove the TikTok videos from her account or respond to the allegations of cultural appropriation.

Something else we’re not too chuffed about? Go-To’s Exceptionoil has been discontinued.

Main image credit: @haileybieber

Briar Clark got her start in the media industry in 2017, as an intern for Marie Claire and InStyle. Since then, her keen interest in fashion and beauty has landed her gigs as a Digital Content Producer and Beauty Editor with titles like Girlfriend, Refinery29, BEAUTYcrew and beautyheaven. She loves the way seemingly innocuous topics like skin care and style have the ability to put a smile on people’s faces or make them think about themselves a little differently. A big believer in self love and experimentation, Briar has made a point of becoming the Australian beauty industry’s unofficial guinea pig for unusual treatments and daring hair trends. When she’s not testing out the latest beauty launches, Briar is big on broadening her horizons, mostly in the form of food but she’s also partial to travelling to new destinations both near and far (and of course, allocating an extra bag to bring their best beauty offerings home with her).